A day out in Shlisselburg, St Petersburg’s Bastille

Shlisselburg Fortress near St Petersburg Russia

While spellings may vary (we have it as Shlisselburg Fortress), the famous fortress is one of the best regional attractions to see in St Petersburg. We can organize a guided tour of Shlisselburg Fortress as part of our St Petersburg tours.

The history of the town of Shlüsselburg began with the fortress that was founded in 1323 by the great prince of Novgorod Georgii Danilovich, in the Zaretskii state, on the island of Orekhovo. The island owes its name to its shape (“orekh” means “nut”) and to the multitude of hazel shrubs growing there. The fortress was built to defend the Novgorod lands from the Swedes. Later the fortress was rebuilt and fortified. As time went by, stone structures replaced the wooden ones, and peasant houses sprung up on the banks of the Neva River around the fortress.

The town of Shlüsselburg itself is famous for its old parks, alleys, and views of Ladoga Lake and the Neva. A statue of Lenin sculpted by V. Sychev remains in Victory Park (Park Pobedy), along with some armaments and mines from the time of the Second World War that stand as reminders of the role that Shlüsselburg played in the defense of the “Road of Life” and the Battle of Leningrad.

Small but rich in history, Shlüsselburg is less than an hour’s drive away from St Petersburg. You can visit the former fortress and prison on the island, take a romantic boat ride, and admire the ancient simplicity of the town’s architecture. It’s sure to leave a lasting impression Due […]